James Nasmyth’s Steam Hammer This model, in the IMechE’s collection, is made to 1/8th scale and based on the steam hammer made at Nasmyth’s works in Patricroft, Manchester. It shows the hammer with the self-acting improvement patented in June 1847. Through harnessing the power of steam Nasmyth’s hammer revolutionised existing mechanised hammers leading to both reduction in costs and improvements in quality of forging iron. … Continue reading JAMES NASMYTH AND THE STEAM HAMMER


Launched on 31st January, The Watercolour World showcases the pre-photographic world in over 80,000 images, including several 100 items from our archives. So come and take a tour around a vanishing world without even leaving your seat! Here are some of our IMechE favourites, explore our images for yourself: And from around the site: Archives, Institution of Mechanical Engineers Continue reading MECHANICAL WATERCOLOURS

Christian Friedrich Lautenschlager in a Mercedes in the 1914 French Grand Prix


Planes, trains and automobiles: mechanical engineering archives now online Over 1900 images from the archives and historic book collection of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) are now available online via VADS. From pictures of experimental cars, aeroplanes, engine designs, engineers portraits, railway locomotives and much more. Highlights include works of art of the Liverpool & Manchester Railway, images of Napier engines, design drawings of … Continue reading IMAGE LIBRARY ONLINE

Flying testbed B2 Canberra WK163 fitted with a NSc D1-2 Double Scorpion rechargeable booster rocket. Stamped on rear - Napier Luton Airport, Neg no 22641, and Secret.


Whether you are in Dundee, Devises, Doha or Delhi you can now gain access to key items held in the Institution of Mechanical Engineers archive collection, all for free, just by going online. Curated from our extensive physical collections, our Virtual Archive showcases a selection of models, items, drawings, notebooks, photographs and documents about the history of engineering and the Institution. We have captured 3D … Continue reading VIRTUAL ARCHIVE: ENGINEERING HISTORY ONLINE

Mallard Engine


Our Presidents are drawn from across the spectrum mechanical engineering: representing the expertise and skills of the discipline. Presidential terms are now annual. For a portrait of each of our Presidents scroll through the image gallery, arranged by date (1847 onwards). For their biographies and portrait click on their name in the list. Past Presidents include George Stephenson (our first President and ‘Father of the … Continue reading IMechE PRESIDENTS


Announcing the launch of our new and improved archive catalogue, archive cat. Archive cat provides a gateway to 1000’s of records charting the history of the Institution and of mechanical engineering; the archive is open to all. Railway engineering, manufacturing, power plant development and automobile development are particularly well represented through personal and company papers. Personal papers of prominent mechanical engineers include those of George … Continue reading ARCHIVE CATALOGUE

Happy Christmas Eve! 'The Christmas Tree', by Albert Chevallier Tayler, 1911.


2014 has been a year of great activity in the archive, pathing the way for exciting developments in 2015. This year cannot go past without mentioning those who lost their lives, while members of this Institution, during the First World War. We have commemorated them in a number of ways, through our Honour Roll and Engineers at War: from Home Front to Battle Front exhibition. … Continue reading 2014 REVIEW

James Nasmyth, Fairies, 1855


A recent donation of eight etchings by James Nasymth has highlighted the varied talents engineers possess: for Nasmyth was not only an inventive engineer but also an accomplished artist; some of his work is featured on Your Paintings and The Alchemist recently sold at Christies for over £10,000. As well as being an artist he also was a photographer (developing pioneering techniques for ‘photographing’ the … Continue reading NASMYTH’S ART

Looking south at Cowper's roof


The Great Exhibition of 1851 is often recalled for its architectural, royal patronage and cosmopolitan feel but less commonly for what was actually displayed: the full title of the event was The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of all Nations. For engineers here was an opportunity to show their wears and skills. IMechE members contributed both to the organisation and the exhibits: Robert … Continue reading MAKING AN EXHIBITION